What to do with candied figs- help!
I found a Greek recipe for baby green figs in syrup, and it sounded awesome! Our fig tree is presently full of mini green figs that quite possibly won't mature and ripen before the first frost hits. I got out there, got my hands and clothes all sticky with fig sap picking a couple kilos, and got to work on that recipe. In addition to the called-for lemon juice, clove and vanilla flavors, I expected it to have some kind of delightful, lingering figgy taste or aroma, something exotic and heady. I don't know exactly what I expected, but what I ended up with was this: candied fruit in a treacly syrup. Not really what I had in mind. The figs turned an unappetizing dark brownish green color, which didn't so much bother me. I guess it was more that biting into one was disturbingly akin to biting into one of those mysterious green or red chunks you find in a Christmas fruitcake; gummy, cloyingly sweet, and unreminiscent of any particular fruit.
The stuff has no unique fig flavor to speak of. The honey sweetness of it is a bit intense, and that candied fruit texture also a bit intense. It's only saving grace is the relieving crackle of the fig seeds.
Even my sweet-tooth hubby was underwhelmed.
So I guess I have the following questions.
Firstly, has anyone else made this, or something similar? Is this what it's supposed to be like , or did I do something wrong? What is typically or traditionally done with it? How, and with what, is it eaten?
Secondly, what am I going to do with it? I have seven bottles full! The only idea I had so far was to serve it with greek yogurt or soft cheese, and walnuts, but even that would be so much better with ripe, fresh figs, or with caramelized figs....with these? I don't know if I can swing it.
Any ideas for candied figs, anyone? What are they good for?
Thanks for helping!
Wow, these are some great ideas, and ones that I'm sure never would've occurred to me, left to my own devices! Knew I could count on chowhounds to come up with something brilliant.
I will try to leave another comment noting what I end up trying(eventually), and how it turns out, in case that info would help out anyone who may find themselves in a similar fix.
Thanks for the sage insights!
+1 with both katecm and Terrie H.
Regarding the jam, maybe whiz it up in the processor? Would it be too sweet to stir into yoghurt?
I bought a tiny, yet expensive, bottle of fig balsamic just to taste it. After that, I bought a jar of fig jam, a decent balsamic, and mixed my own salad dressing. It doesn't even need oil, if you choose. Sounds like you might have a head start on such a thing.
I'm wondering if you could go an Asian-type route by mixing with soy sauce, citrus juice (lemon, orange, yuzu), and maybe some neutral oil to make a chicken or pork basting sauce or dip for pot stickers or egg rolls.
I think katecm has a good idea. You might try simmering with either water, or orange juice and zest turn it into a jam (fig and orange jam is one of my favorites). I know it's disheartening to go to so much trouble and be disappointed in the results.
Edit -- another thought would be to simmer to soften and make a creative barbecue sauce with vinegar to cut the sweetness, maybe some dijon mustard, pureed tomatoes, etc. I think a date-flavored sauce would be good with pork or chicken.